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19 Jun 2019

Belarus, EU hold Human Rights Dialogue round in Brussels

Belarus, EU hold Human Rights Dialogue round in Brussels
Photo courtesy of Belarus Embassy in Brussels

MINSK, 19 June (BelTA) - Belarus and the European Union held the 6th round of the bilateral Human Rights Dialogue in Brussels on 18 June 2019, BelTA learned from the EU Delegation to Belarus.

Belarus and the European Union discussed extensively policy developments, the implementation of the National Human Rights Action Plan in Belarus and the human rights situation in the country.  Particular attention was paid to the freedoms of expression, assembly and association.

The participants also reviewed policies on gender equality and fight against family violence and the status of their implementation both in the EU and Belarus. The issue of the use of death penalty was also raised during the meeting.
 
“Belarus’ recent openness to cooperation in promoting human rights in international fora, including cooperation via UN mechanisms such as the Universal Periodic Review, is a positive development. At the same time, further cooperation by Belarus with UN special procedures mandate holders is needed,” the EU Delegation to Belarus said.
 
The Belarusian delegation was led by Oleg Kravchenko, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Belarus. The European Union delegation was led by Thomas Mayr Harting Managing Director for Europe and Central Asia in the European External Action Service (EEAS). The meeting was also attended by EU Special Representative for Human Rights, Eamon Gilmore, representatives of European Union member states.
 
The European Union appreciated the active participation and contribution of a number of civil society and non-governmental organizations on civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights in parts of the Dialogue,”  the EU Delegation to Belarus said.
 
In turn, the Belarusian Ministry of Foreign Affairs said that the prospects for cooperation in the field of human rights were discussed, among other things, in the context of the recommendations issued as part of the Universal Periodic Review by the UN Human Rights Council. “Attention was paid to human rights in Belarus and a number of EU member states. A separate segment of the meeting was attended by representatives of the Belarusian non-governmental organizations,” said Anatoly Glaz, Head of the Information and Digital Diplomacy Office, Press Secretary of the Belarusian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Oleg Kravchenko met with EU Special Representative (EUSR) for Human Rights Eamon Gilmore to discuss the prospects for cooperation across various issues of the Belarusian-European cooperation in human rights.

Belarus deputy minister met with EU Anti-Trafficking Coordinator Myria Vassiliadou on 19 June. The parties discussed the cooperation between Belarus and the EU in anti-trafficking matters, including in the international arena.

The next Human Rights Dialogue meeting between the EU and Belarus is scheduled for 2020.

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